Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU Massey Cancer Center

Lipidomics developing shared resource core


The Lipidomics developing shared resource core is a key focal point for development of a sustainable critical mass of expertise in lipid signaling and state of the art analytical techniques.

  • Workflow

    VCU Massey Cancer Center’s Lipidomics Developing Shared Resource Core has recently acquired an AB SCIEX Quadrupole Time of Flight (QTOF 5600+) mass analyzer. This high resolution mass analyzer allows us to carry out investigative analysis of biological systems. A typical workflow would include interrogation of the entire mass range of the analyzer (50-1250 m/z) at a mass accuracy of 1-2ppm between a treatment and control biological state via MS and MS/MS analysis. This data acquisition is followed by post-acquisition comparative statistical analysis to identify the changes in the metabolome/lipidome between the two states. As such this mass analyzer is an effective hypotheses generator allowing the identification of perturbations in the metabolome/lipidome during the onset and progression of disease as well as with different treatments. In conjunction with our existing complement of high throughput hybrid triple quadruple linear ion trap mass analyzers the generated hypotheses can easily be validated in large sample cohorts in a targeted fashion.

    This integrated workflow opens the door for scientists at Massey to quickly and efficiently carry out research into diverse areas such as biomarker identification and validation from multiple biological material, identification of metabolic perturbation following various cancer treatments as well as comparative analysis of differential treatment regimes. We welcome the scientific community of VCU to utilize this resource for expanding their research into new, exciting and often unexplored territories in basic science as well as clinical and translational research.

  • Core Overview

    This Lipidomics Core is a key focal point for development of a sustainable critical mass of expertise in lipid signaling and state of the art analytical techniques. The core is located in newly renovated space on the 2nd floor of Sanger Hall in room 2-012. The primary service is LC-MS/MS quantitation of known lipid species using established protocols defined as either published methods in peer-reviewed journals or previously developed methods within the lipidomics facility.

    The facility is built around four tandem triple quadrupole/linear ion trap mass spectrometers, two high-end AB SCIEX 4000 QTRAPs, an AB SCIEX 5500 QTRAP, and the newest mass spectrometer, an AB SCIEX 6500 QTRAP, which us the greatest capability on the East coast in the quantitative analysis of small molecules. These instruments have the necessary resolution and sensitivity for a broad range of qualitative and quantitative lipid and metabolite analyses required for exhaustive characterization of lipid signaling molecules and metabolic pathways. The lipidomics facility provides both qualitative and quantitative analysis of lipid species utilizing high performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). The AB SCIEX 4000 QTRAPs are mainly utilized for the analysis of high level lipids (e.g. SM, S1P (in serum), ceramides, LPA, CL, etc...). The 5500 and 6500 QTRAPs are used for eicosanoids allowing us to analyze 152 of these lipids in a single run and for examining low abundant lipids and protein:lipid interactions due to their high sensitivity. This facility has led to >50 peer-reviewed publications including two Nature papers, a Science paper, and a paper in Cancer Cell. This facility has also aided VCU researchers in obtaining national awards as well as led to the funding of numerous extramural grant applications for VCU faculty. Overall, VCU has one of the most capable Lipidomics facilities in the country.

  • Services

    Rates and member subsidy

    Massey members pay 75 percent of these rates per the member subsidy program.

    Cardiolipins $18.00
    Cholesterols $18.00
    Eicosanoids $27.00
    LPA $18.00
    Phospholipids $18.00
    Sphingolipids $18.00
    Steroid Hormones $24.00
    Vitamin D $25.00
    Machine Time $10/hr

    Before submitting samples, you must contact us to set up appropriate logistics. Some lipids are unstable and require immediate analysis. Our goal is to provide you with the best data possible! All data will be delivered as an easy to read Excel file. All samples must be accompanied by a sample submission form signed by a PI. Please note that normalization is required. Dr. Jeremy Allegood should be contacted for sphingolipid and cardiolipin analysis. Contact Dr. Shanaka Wijesinghe for eicosanoids, steroids, phospholipids, and cholesterol.

  • Contacts
    Charles Chalfant, Ph.D.
    Dept. of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
    Professor & Vice Chair
    Endowed Chair of Cancer Cell Signaling
    (804) 828-9526
    Assistant Director
    Dayanjan Shanaka Wijesinghe, Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor
    Department of Surgery
    Room 2-006 & 2-012
    Sanger Hall
    (804) 828-9678
    Operational Director
    Jeremy Allegood, Ph.D.
    Dept. of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
    Room 2-006 & 2-012
    Sanger Hall
    (804) 827-9909



All publications that include results, services or products generated by VCU Massey Cancer Center Shared Resources must include the following acknowledgement in the manuscript:

"Services and products in support of the research project were generated by the VCU Massey Cancer Center Lipidomics Shared Resource, supported, in part, with funding from NIH-NCI Cancer Center Support Grant  P30 CA016059."

PubMed Central (PMC) ID numbers are required for those publications that use CCSG-supported shared resources. All of Massey Cancer Center's shared resources are supported by the CCSG. Information to assist you with this process can be found here